Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Suite Sales

There has been some talk that the financial crisis -- which, one would assume, would hit New York harder than most places -- would cut into ticket and luxury box sales in the city's new stadiums. That may be just talk:
Executives at Yankee Stadium are monitoring the economic situation but have not seen any effect, said Alice McGillion, a spokeswoman. She did not provide specific sales figures, but the luxury suites are nearly sold out, according to news reports. The same is true at the Mets’ Citi Field, said Dave Howard, the team’s executive vice president for business operations.

“Timing is a part of this,” he said. “The firms we’ve sold to haven’t had any major issues, and the people who have them realize they’ve got great value for the quality of what we’re offering here.”

I can't help but read that second paragraph as wishful thinking. Sure, the timing of it all means that many commitments were made before the crisis truly took hold, but to suggest that a sale is safe because "the firms we've sold to haven't had any major issues" is rather silly. No one thought Bear Stearns or Lehman or any of the others were going to have any major issues either.

At any rate, the article has little if any specifics on box sales because, according to the article, "the luxury-suite market is intensively secretive." Too bad these stadiums aren't, you know, funded by taxpayer dollars so that we could see how our investment is paying off.


Crowhop said...

I have wondered just how long it will be called Citi Field.

mooseinohio said...

I feel me secure that everything will be okay since the Cubs just got swept and all should begin to be right with the world again soon.

Pete Toms said...

None of us know how the Yanks & Mets are faring selling their luxury suites, but to stir the pot, this from a Forbes piece 09.23.

"Industry experts estimate corporations sink more than $10 billion annually into sports sponsorships, about a quarter of which comes from the financial-services industry. That's why the Wall Street mess figures to tarnish pro sport's gilded age, one driven by new stadiums, luxury suites and high ticket prices. Some industry experts see an average dip of 10% or more in sponsorship dollars over the next year or so."


"Another worry for teams: The plethora of new stadiums and arenas now dotting the sports landscape are geared toward America's upper crust, a potential hedge against economic downturn that has yet to be tested.

With middle-class fans priced out of most seats, corporate sponsors were sold the idea of a yuppie audience at the ballpark. That's particularly true in New York City, where the Yankees, Mets, Giants and Jets are all set to open new stadiums next year. But with Wall Street rupturing jobs, luxury boxes are likely the last thing on the minds of thousands of investment professionals."